For my time in Chicago I had planned to try out three different downtown hotels – I ended up with the AC Hotel Chicago, the Courtyard by Marriott and the Hyatt Regency Chicago.
The AC Hotel Chicago Downtown is located just off the Magnificent Mile strip in downtown Chicago, close to all the downtown attractions. It looks very much like a re-flag from a different brand by the owner Marcus Hotels & Resorts. The hotel just re-openend in May 2015.
The lobby is rather bland (this could be a La Quinta Inn) but check-in was fast and easy with the sole, lone attendant. She was extremely busy responding to calls and check-in’s/ check-outs the whole evening. It was therefore rough to catch her attention.
The room was large and in dark colors. It was cold though since the heating would only spring into action once the room was occupied. It had a powerful fan though and things would heat up quickly.
The AC brand is Marriott’s design on a budget answer (they bought the originally Spanish brand) and it suffers from the same ills as many W hotels. It’s nearly impossible to find light switches and the whole rooms is not designed around you but around a design concept.
The Internet was free (for all guests) and fast at around 10Mbit. I loved how easy it was to connect.
The bed had a warm comforter (a great idea with those Chicago temperatures) and the mattress soft but not terribly so. The bathrooms were brand new with a stylish encapsulated shower but (as with my stay at the AC Hotel Algeciras) was teeming with hair from a prior guest. Somehow the light fixtures and design elements make it hard to see it’s there. I only discovered it while showering myself.
The same is true with the sink that barely drains – it looks great but it’s full of gross hair.
From my room on the 7th floor the traffic was certainly audible. It wasn’t super loud but it will wake you up if you are a light sleeper.
AC Hotels do not include free breakfast unless you are a Marriott Rewards Platinum. However breakfast is sold per item (not as buffet) and is very affordable. Chicago Downtown is teeming with excellent coffee options so I did not venture for breakfast.
This is a decent downtown hotel and it is brand new. However it does not work too well and the cleaning issues at AC Hotels seem to be systematic. This would not be my first choice in Chicago.